AP World History Primary Document Excerpt for Analysis
This is a formatted document for the purpose of easy access, printing and distribution to students for the purpose of analyzing documents in AP World History Courses. If you teach AP World, you are familiar with the use of primary documents for the purpose of document analysis. Many times these documents are in a document source book and have to be copied for distribution to students; or there are electronic versions where students must read the document on-line and submit answers. The service that I have provided for you is to simply format the document with the analysis questions into an easy-to access and printable document that can be readily printed for easy distribution to students. Document analysis questions are also included so that documents can be read and analyzed individually, in a pair-share situation or use in a Group setting
Source: Rudolf Hoess, Commandant to Auschwitz (Wiedenfeld & Nicolson, Ltd.).
About the Document
The Holocaust, the systematic slaughter of over six million European Jews during World War II, was the most horrific aspect of the Nazi reign in Germany. The origins of the Holocaust were as early as 1935, with the passage of the Nuremberg Laws, which strictly regulated Jewish involvement in German society. The laws forbid Jews from government service, intermarriage with other (non-Jewish) Germans, or holding public office. By January 1942, Nazi leaders were openly discussing the "Final Solution": removal of European Jews through any means necessary, including extermination.
The Nazi government removed many Jews from their towns and villages and placed them in concentration camps located in various parts of Europe. The most infamous of these was Auschwitz, located in German-occupied Poland. Upon arrival, Jews unfit for work were immediately exterminated; others were spared only to be worked to death in forced labor camps. The selection that follows is from the Commandant of Auschwitz, Rudolf Hess, who wrote his memoirs while in prison after the war. He was executed for his crimes in 1947.